Arizona Coyotes release schedule for 2016-17 NHL season

Posted at 12:43 PM, Jun 21, 2016
and last updated 2016-06-21 15:43:30-04

Three days before what could be a very eventful NHL Draft for the Arizona Coyotes, the team released its schedule for the 2016-17 season.

The Coyotes will open the season at home against the Philadelphia Flyers on Oct. 15 at 6 p.m. before embarking on a six-game Eastern Conference road trip. 

The Coyotes will host the defending NHL champion Pittsburgh Penguins on Saturday, Feb. 11, and they'll play the Western Conference champion San Jose Sharks in Glendale on Nov. 1, Nov. 19 and Feb. 18. The Chicago Blackhawks come to town Feb. 2, and the Los Angeles Kings visit Dec. 1 and Jan. 31.

The Coyotes missed the playoffs for the fourth straight season last year but made significant improvements after finishing as the NHL's second-worst team in 2014-15. They also have two first-round picks and five of the first 68 picks in Friday's draft, leading to multiple trade rumors that could make for an interesting night.

The Coyotes are also expected to soon announce plans for the creation of a new arena. Last month, Coyotes co-owner Anthony LeBlanc said he expects an announcement to be made before the draft begins.